As part of a long-form dissection of the entire rise and fall of 2018 sensation MoviePass, Business Insider has released a story that contains damning new information on the much-loathed movie subscription service—which somehow remains in operation as we speak, by the way. A shell of its former self, which was reported to have lost 90 percent of its former subscribers back in April, it’s yet another report that could finally spell the end of the service, which has also been faced with several lawsuits related to unsatisfied customers who believe they have a legal grievance with MoviePass.
The most gaudy piece of new information in the Business Insider story involves regularly appearing MoviePass scoundrel/CEO Mitch Lowe, who apparently ordered “his employees to change the passwords of heavy MoviePass users so they would not be able to log on and use the service.” This was happening at the height of the company’s financial woes, at about the same time as it was being demonstrated that the service’s $9.99 monthly fee definitely would not be enough to keep it afloat when users actually wanted to make use of the service with any kind of regularity. The password swapping, then, would appear to have been a last-minute emergency measure designed to make it more difficult for the more prolific MoviePass users to continue costing the service money. The only type of user MoviePass seemed to actually like? The ones who simply paid the subscription fee and never went to the movies.
Later, the company even automated its withholding of services from its own subscribers by creating a “trip wire” that would automatically shut down MoviePass services whenever the company’s banking balances went too low. On a daily basis, users would be shown error messages saying things like “There are no more screenings at this theater today,” as a result of MoviePass not having funds on hand to keep the service going at any given time.
It makes it all that much harder to believe that MoviePass is still in operation, but there are apparently still people using the service, which currently has a $19.99 monthly subscription cost. However, a quick glance at the MoviePass website shows that the service isn’t accepting any new subscribers at the time, which is, shall we say … a little fishy, like everything involving the service. Will we finally write the official MoviePass obituary in 2019? Or will it just fade away into obscurity, going out with a whimper rather than a bang?